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Thread: The Day After September

  1. #61
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    Re: The Day After September

    Quotes from Reffo's # 51:

    Wanting the settlements proves nothing.

    Reffo: It is not just "wanting the settlements". Said settlements do not stand on thin air, they are built on the land and establishing a settlement means
    getting hold of the place where they are built. They are not established with the intention of grabbing land temporarily but with the hope of holding it for good. The idea behind the creation of settlements and outposts all over the West Bank is to establish so many 'facts on the ground' that eventually there would be no room left for a viable Palestinian State. I would challenge anyone here to argue that the aim of the settlement enterprise in the WB is not to get hold of all of it.

    Yes, most Israelis then want the settlements because most of the areas on which the major "settlements" are built were areas that were owned and inhabited by Jews prior to 1948. But wanting the settlements is not the same as wanting all the land between the river and the sea, even though Israel would be entitled to that too. In fact, the willingness of Israel to compromise on that was demonstrated in 1947, 2000/2001, 2008 when Israel accepted less and offered formal peace deals to the Palestinian Arabs on borders which did not include all the land between the river and the sea. None of those offers were accepted by the Arabs.

    That the areas where major settlements (and what about the minor ones?) are built were areas inhabited by Jews prior to 1948, is just one of the various reasons 'why' the settlers and their supporters 'want all the land'. Since the settlement enterprise has been carried out with the overt or covert support of successive Israeli administrations it may be said that procuring 'all the land' between the Jordan and the sea has been part of continued Israeli policy.

  2. #62
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    Re: The Day After September

    From Mediocrates #52:

    At the time of the original partition the Jews were given about a quarter of the Mandate. The Arabs balked and the Jews' slice was cut in half. The Arabs balked and went to war and lost about half the difference between the first and second Mandate offer. But they gained most of Jerusalem. Then the Jews struck and gained back most of the second Mandate offer. Since then they've been offered somewhere between 96 and 100% of the second Mandate land space, which they turned down. They turned it down in 47-48 and they turned it down every time since 93. And what they want now isn't even the 49 Armistice lines (pre June 67 line) but the pre-second Mandate offer line as well and that is the smallest land area Israel ever consisted of, on paper. Even that they reject. So there's nothing really left to demand except everything else.


    Mediocrates: I've taken the liberty of bolding a sentence in your quote to call the attention at a dubious part of your historic recollection. What the Palestinians want now or, better put, what they 'are asking for' is recognition of a Palestinian State with borders based on the 1967 lines. They are not asking for the 47,49,51, 55, 95 or whichever lines, just the 67 lines. Mixing facts with fanciful theories is an effective tool of propaganda, but striving for consistency can, I think, make your views reaching others than the already convinced.

  3. #63
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    Re: The Day After September

    There is quite a lot to comment on the article by Sarah Honing quoted by Aliyah in his #59. For the time being I'd like to comment only in her last sentence:

    "We wont be this September, either, on condition that we dont scare ourselves to death. Mass-hysteria can turn a trickle into a tidal torrent."

    I don't think that many in Israel are "scared to death" and neither I see here any signs of "mass-hysteria". If the PA initiative is accepted by the UN in September it will be just another of the many bi-lateral and unilateral initiatives in this protracted IP conflict. The establishment of a PS is dependent on Israeli willingness to accept it. Since Israel apparently is not willing to accept it and since it has the military power to prevent the functioning of such a State, nothing dramatic will happen. It will be just another fruitless UN declaration in a long series of them which include the Partition in two States, the status of Jerusalem, etc., etc. As Miss Honing rightly points out in her article those declarations were never implemented.

    But Miss Honing in her lengthy article doesn't discuss the questions that should be of our primary concern: what are the pros and cons of the establishment of a PS this year and not (if at all) in some nebulous year in the future? For the ones that are striving for a binational State the cons are clear but, for the ones that subscribe to a two-state solution, the pros might well outweigh the cons. I would say then that the main question to be asked (within the context of a two-state solution) is: Why not a Palestinian State now?

  4. #64
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    Re: The Day After September

    Quote Originally Posted by Jorge
    Reffo: It is not just "wanting the settlements". Said settlements do not stand on thin air, they are built on the land and establishing a settlement means
    getting hold of the place where they are built. They are not established with the intention of grabbing land temporarily but with the hope of holding it for good. The idea behind the creation of settlements and outposts all over the West Bank is to establish so many 'facts on the ground' that eventually there would be no room left for a viable Palestinian State. I would challenge anyone here to argue that the aim of the settlement enterprise in the WB is not to get hold of all of it
    Like we both said, both sides want it all and as I said, by rights Israel SHOULD have it all. But Israel has demonstrated in 1947, 2000/2001 and 2008 that it is willing to settle for less for the sake of a peaceful solution.

    Quote Originally Posted by Jorge
    That the areas where major settlements (and what about the minor ones?) are built were areas inhabited by Jews prior to 1948, is just one of the various reasons 'why' the settlers and their supporters 'want all the land'. Since the settlement enterprise has been carried out with the overt or covert support of successive Israeli administrations it may be said that procuring 'all the land' between the Jordan and the sea has been part of continued Israeli policy
    Retaining the major "settlements" IS Israeli policy. Why? Because it is land that has always belonged to Jews and it is not Israel's policy to ethnically cleanse nearly 500,000 of it's citizens from their homes.

    As for the rest of Judea and Samaria, over the last few years, Israel has not built new "settlements" in the vain hope (it seems) of finding a peaceful solution. But it seems, the Pal Arabs don't want a bar of that. They don't want to sign ANY peace deal with Israel. That's why they insist on conditions and pre-conditions that they know are totally unacceptable to Israel.

    So, given that, my hope is that Israel will recognise the zero sum game that the Arabs are still playing and that Israel will show them [the Arabs and their friends] that Israel too has a zero sum option that it can play. What is that, you might ask? For one, it could (I say could, not necessarily should) return to the policies of creating more facts on the ground in Judea and Samaria. And as time goes on, if the Pal Arabs won't wake up from their stupor and would continue to insist on their zero sum game, Israel could do other things too (I won't elaborate). The bottom line is that Israel needs to show the Arabs that two can play the game of intransigence and that the Arabs too have something to lose by it. Has it occurred to you Jorge that that's what Israel has been doing all along? On the one hand they extended an olive branch to the Arabs and on the other hand they were demonstrating to them that time is not on their [the Arab's] side.
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  5. #65
    Senior Member bararallu's Avatar
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    Re: The Day After September

    Again.. name one instance where the PA or any other Muslim Arab entity... ever... has made land concessions, in a peace treaty, to a former dhimmi nation (Copt, Jew, Marronite etc). Name one instance Jorge. Just one.

    Israel by itself:

    All of Jordan and some of Syria
    Southern Lebanon
    Sinai
    Gaza
    A lot of Judea and Samaria

  6. #66
    Senior Member Aliyah1995's Avatar
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    Re: The Day After September

    They are not asking for the 47,49,51, 55, 95 or whichever lines, just the 67 lines.
    It really doesn't matter what we call them. We could call them the Michael Jackson lines for all I care. The bottom line is that a) these are the armistice lines when the cease fire of the War of Independence occurred (a war which the Arabs started with the goal of pushing the Jews into the sea, unless you accept the Arab "narrative") b) this is territory that Israel is being asked to "give back", which Israel won in a defensive war, which the Arabs waged with the goal of, once again, pushing the Jews into the sea (unless, of course, you accept their "narrative").

    Oh, BTW, this land (Judea and Samaria) never belonged to the "Palestinians". Jordan ethically cleansed Jews from J & S in 1948. Before that the British Mandate ruled this territory (as they ruled all of Mandatory Palestine) and before that the Ottoman Turks (who were not Arabs). However, there are those who would rather let competing "narratives" get in the way of facts, but that does NOT mean those of us who are against Israel committing national suicide have to.
    "Study astronomy and physics if you desire to comprehend the relation between the world and G-d's management of it." - RaMBaM (Maimonides), Guide For The Perplexed

  7. #67
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    Re: The Day After September

    Abbas will never 'do' anything. He will demand that if others don't deliver for him, terrible but vague things will occur. All of this posturing is meaningless. Also it's lie. He will pursue or attempt to pursue unilateral statehood. Not seriously of course, but just to drive home the point that what he just said is a lie. To Abbas, lying serves no purpose except to be able show how he lies, and gets away with it, later on.

  8. #68
    Senior Member Mediocrates's Avatar
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    Re: The Day After September

    Quote Originally Posted by Jorge View Post
    From Mediocrates #52:

    Mixing facts with fanciful theories is an effective tool of propaganda, but striving for consistency can, I think, make your views reaching others than the already convinced.
    They have already rejected what you assert and want or claim to want more. My claim stands.

  9. #69
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    Re: The Day After September

    It's more than just speculation and propaganda by Medio, it's what some Palestinian Arab leaders themselves are on the record of speculating about ...

    PA negotiator Nabil Sha’ath said the possibility of demanding the implementation of the 1947 Partition Plan was one of a number of options the Palestinians were studying in wake of Washington’s threat to veto a statehood resolution in September. Sha’ath declared that despite the US threat, the PA was determined to proceed with the statehood bid in September
    Sha'at's words speak for itself and they justify Medio's comments ...
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  10. #70
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    Re: The Day After September

    I happened to be reading about J. Habermas (mainly his Theory of Communicative Action) and one paragraph caught my attention: " for Habermas people argue rationally only when they seek consensus". It caught my attention because I thought it might be quite relevant to our problems in argumentation on a topic such as the one of this Thread, that is: the Palestinians seeking recognition from the UN for an State of their own.

    Note that Habermas says seeking consensus or striving for consensus even if, concerning a particular topic, there is no guarantee that consensus will ever be reached. So, in a bit of soul searching motivated by Habermas book, I asked myself whether my argumentation could be conducted in the spirit of seeking consensus (as opposed to trying to score some points over my opponents)

    In order to do a thing like that you need to find aspects of the matter under discussion on which you might attain partial, if not complete agreement. So, somewhat arbitrarily I examined the latest Posts in this Thread seeking sentences on which I might agree or even partially agree with. Surprisingly enough, I found some, for instance:

    Reffo in his #64 writes:

    Like we both said, both sides want it all and as I said, by rights Israel SHOULD have it all.

    and Aliyah in his #66 writes:

    b) this is territory that Israel is being asked to "give back", which Israel won in a defensive war, which the Arabs waged with the goal of, once again, pushing the Jews into the sea (unless, of course, you accept their "narrative").

    Here at least consensus is visible in the horizon even if it might not be reached. Seeking for it I could adopt Reffo's above sentence with the only change of substituting 'rights' by 'claims'.

    Since I don't accept 'their' narrative I can accept all of Aliyah's b) with the only reservation that I think he was talking about the 48 war and I'd apply it to the 1967 war because it is the relevant one when arguing about "The Day after September".

    I haven't finished yet, please hold your observations till I do (hopefully tomorrow night).

  11. #71
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    Re: The Day After September

    Quote Originally Posted by Jorge
    Here at least consensus is visible in the horizon even if it might not be reached. Seeking for it I could adopt Reffo's above sentence with the only change of substituting 'rights' by 'claims'.
    Well then, it seems in order for me to reiterate why it is 'rights' rather than 'claims' ...

    It is 'rights' because present day Israel together with Judea and Samaria represents 20% of historic Palestine which consisted of Western Palestine and Eastern Palestine (Trans-Jordan). But the total Jewish population of Palestine was more than 20% of the total population in 1947. And today even more so. Therefore, by rights, it should be entitled to at least 20% of the land (Western Palestine) especially since the Arabs caused so much Jewish blood to flow through all the unjust wars that they perpetrated against the Jewish people in the name of their holy war against the Jews. Not to mention that in fact, present day Israel together with Judea and Samaria was the ancestral homeland of the Jewish people going back for at least 3000 years. Way before the Arab invasion of around 630 AD ...

    It is NOT 'claims' because to date, Israel has demonstrated in 1947, 2000/2001 and 2008 that it is willing to settle for less for the sake of a peaceful solution. Having said that, it is my hope that if the Arabs persist with their zero sum game, Israel WILL progressively claim what IS rightfully theirs. After all, Israel has nothing to lose if the Arabs continue their hostilities against the Jewish state irrespective of what Israel does or does not do ...
    Idealism increases in direct proportion to one's distance from the problem.
    Author: John Galsworthy 1867-1933, British Novelist, Playwright

  12. #72
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    Re: The Day After September

    Continued from my Post # 70 about "arguing rationally and consensus":

    The next step could be to further develop the sentences in which we both agree while trying to keep as close to consensus as possible. Starting with the paragraph of Aliya's #66 which I quote again:

    b) this is territory that Israel is being asked to "give back", which Israel won in a defensive war, which the Arabs waged with the goal of, once again, pushing the Jews into the sea.

    Now, as Aliyah said, Israel is being asked to "give back" territories acquired in that war. Being asked for is a request and as such requires an answer; the way I see it there are two relevant answers, namely: 1) Yes, we give back 2) No, we won't give back [there is a third option for Israel: that of ignoring the request; this answer I take as identical to 2)]

    Since every action has consequences, the next step may be to proceed with the consequences of both 1) and 2):

    If Israel agrees to give back the territories acquired in said war [option 1)] we'd encounter immediately a two-state situation ( Note that I said, so as to keep close to consensus, 'situation' and not 'a two-state solution' of the conflict, as it is usually put).

    If Israel refuses to give back said territories [option 2)] the consequence will be the continuation, for an unspecified time, of a bi-national state in its present form or with modifications.

    Again, for the sake of consensus, I abstain to qualify the two alternatives as 'good' or 'bad', or saying that one is 'better' than the other. I realize that, since we have opposite opinions, the point cannot be avoided; only postponed. The reason for postponing is to see if readers of these Posts think they can agree with the sentences proposed so far. If so one could proceed with other propositions that are not far from consensus and, if not, one could re-examine the points of disagreement to see if they could modified so as to make them palatable.

  13. #73
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    Re: The Day After September

    I would like to declare that by and large I agree with the above summary that Jorge presented.

    I say 'by and large' because I don't necessarily agree with the way he put some things but it seems to be an honest attempt on his part to present facts as a snapshot, without historical context. I guess, for the sake of discussion, I for one could live with that at least for a while. Not for good, because eventually historical context cannot be avoided.

    I must say, I am busting to see where Jorge is heading with this. I too have a way of summarising this conflict and why IMHO it seems to be so intractable but I will let Jorge lead us for now at least.
    Idealism increases in direct proportion to one's distance from the problem.
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  14. #74
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    Re: The Day After September

    Concerning this point about there never having been a Palestinian state:

    It seems to be quite common to say that Palestinians have no right to self-determination because they are not a people. They are not a people, it is said, because (among other things) they have never governed themselves and there has never been a Palestinian state called Palestine. Rather, the territory was ruled over by Jordanians, Brits, Ottomans, and so on.

    I think we can all agree that an argument about political norms is only really valid if it is universalisable - that is, can be stated as a general rule and applied regardless of the specific circumstances to all sorts of cases. Otherwise, we are left with nothing more than self-serving sophistry. So, the argument seems to me to be:

    (1) A people is characterised by historical self-government in something resembling a nation-state
    (2) Palestinians lack this characteristic

    Therefore Palestinians are not a people.

    But when we universalise and apply that rule to the entire world it quickly becomes clear that it is nonsense. If it were so, I would guess that over half of the world's peoples would no longer be truly "peoples", deserving of self-determination. After all, who are the "Central African" people? When did they come into existence? What history of national self-government do they have? Indeed, what history of self-government do MOST of the peoples of Africa have? Perhaps, since the only truly valid "governor" of most African territories was some colonial power, we should advocate the restoration of their rule over Africa? And this same basic point applies to all countries which were under colonial rule and whose modern "nationalities" have been artificially created - in Central Asia, in the Middle East, and beyond.

    The point is to say, the fact that these peoples have never ruled over themselves in the past because they had been dominated by foreign powers (Brits, Ottomans and others) does not mean they should not have the right to govern themselves today. Indeed, that is perhaps the central premise of decolonisation... It makes no sense to say that because Palestinians have never been given the chance to realise their right to self-determination in the past, that right should continue to be denied to them today.

  15. #75
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    Re: The Day After September

    Quote Originally Posted by curlyg
    It seems to be quite common to say that Palestinians have no right to self-determination because they are not a people
    I am not sure whether you include me in attributing the above statement. If you do, then let me tell you exactly what I have been ACTUALLY known to say ...

    I say, prior to 1948 the Palestinian people considered themselves to be part of the greater Arab nation. Part of greater Syria and Egypt. They did NOT consider themselves to be a distinct Palestinian nation.

    Having said that, I acknowledge their right to seek self determination now if thats what they want. But it would be a mistake to deny why they actually decided to do this. They decided to do this as a strategy against Israel. To make their "struggle" look like a struggle for national liberation instead of a border dispute between two sovereign nations (between Israel and Syria or between Israel and Egypt).

    Quote Originally Posted by curlyg
    They are not a people, it is said, because (among other things) they have never governed themselves and there has never been a Palestinian state called Palestine
    Like I said, if they want to call themselves a people, that's their perogative.

    The only reason why I mentioned above that there never was a sovereign Palestine, is to remind Jorge that there never was a recognised law known as Palestinian law other than the law of the British Mandate which in turn permitted Jews to live in Judea and Samaria.

    Quote Originally Posted by curlyg
    Rather, the territory was ruled over by Jordanians, Brits, Ottomans, and so on
    Bingo. And that's why I said above that the relevant local law in Judea and Samaria (the West Bank) are the laws of the British Mandate which was the last recognised sovereign power. Obviously it could not be Palestinian Arab law, since they never had sovereignity over any of this land. Nor could it be Jordanian law because Jordan's annexation of Judea and Samaria was not recognised by other than about a couple of nations. Even most Arab states did not recognise Jordanian sovereignity in Judea and Samaria.
    Idealism increases in direct proportion to one's distance from the problem.
    Author: John Galsworthy 1867-1933, British Novelist, Playwright

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